"It was over and above what he's done before", Sen. Lindsey Graham of SC told reporters recently. "To say the Justice Department ought to punish his enemies and protect his friends goes beyond what any president in my memory has ever said, and that we can't normalize that". "Only prosecute Democrats, '" Leahy said.
A pair of tweets Monday by Mr. Trump criticized Attorney General Jeff Sessions for bringing corruption charges against two "very popular" Republican lawmakers so close to November because, he suggested, it hurts the GOP's chances of holding the House.
On Aug. 23, Republican Representative Duncan Hunter was indicted on charges that he and his wife used hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign funds to pay for vacations, video games and other personal expenses and filed false campaign finance reports, federal officials said.
Both have proclaimed their innocence.
"Justice is blind. Justice should be blind", Ryan told reporters on Wednesday, ABC News reports, adding that "the process is working its way as it should". Ryan has removed Collins and Hunter from their committee assignments. Mueller is now leading the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Collins was accused in a 30-page indictment of tipping off his son - while attending the picnic - about the results of a failed drug trial that was about to crash the stock price of an Australian biotech company.
Geoffrey Berman, acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of NY, oversaw the indictment last month of Collins on charges of insider trading. Both seats appear likely to remain in GOP hands, but the charges have raised Democratic hopes.
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While he eventually held there, he needed to save seven break points along the way. "It's one of the first times it's happened to me.
The revelations in Woodward's book, "Fear: Trump in the White House", set to be released next Tuesday, represent the latest episode in a public feud between Trump and Sessions since the attorney general's recusal in March 2017. With the White House failing to name a permanent U.S. Attorney, the judges unanimously voted to keep Berman as acting U.S. Attorney until a permanent replacement was selected.
Baker noted that after Watergate, presidents were "careful to restrict White House communications with anyone at Justice except the attorney general, and even then, keeping records of any communication".
Former Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara called Trump's tweet "next level insane, inappropriate, unethical, stupid, incriminating". But moments after the Judiciary Committee's Republican chairman Chuck Grassley opened the hearing, Democrats protested the withholding of the documents and asked to have the proceedings adjourned.
In an Oval Office interview last week with Bloomberg News, Trump declined to say whether he'd keep Sessions in his job after the election.
Sessions was an early Trump supporter in 2016.
Sessions recently pushed back, saying publicly that he will not allow political manipulation of the department.
The continuing failure of Republicans to provide a check on this president makes the upcoming midterm elections all the more important.